HideMyAss VPN Review: Is it a great buy this 2021?
VPN with total anonymity and security.
HideMyAss (HMA) is a capable VPN service, packed with robust features in a sleek, easy to use manner. On their website, HideMyAss claims to be “the world’s best no-log VPN” and promises to keep your data private from everyone.
Launched in 2005, the company was acquired by Avast a few years ago and has continued to grow into one of the largest VPN providers. Today, HideMyAss offers access to servers in an unbeatable 190 countries across the world, making an ideal option for bypassing censorship and geo-restrictions.
In this HideMyAss VPN review, we will examine the VPNs features and benefits and let you know whether it’s worth your time and money.
Pricing Plans & Payment Methods
While there are plenty of free VPNs available, cost can sometimes be a barrier when looking for a quality paid VPN. HMA is reasonably priced and offers three standard subscription packages.
All three subscription options include all available features, with the only difference being the billing cycles. And as if often the case, the longer your subscription, the lesser you pay in the long-term.
Currently, the cheapest way to get HideMyAss is by signing up for the 3-year plan at a cost of $3.99 per month. For the yearly package, you’ll need to pay $6.99 and the 1-month subscription is priced at $11.99, which is just about the current industry average.
Besides the three standard packages, the provider also offers family and business plans, which feature between 10 to 30 simultaneous connections. HMA comes with a 7-day free trial, which gives you enough time to test the service. Additionally, all purchases are backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
HideMyAss supports multiple payment methods, but their availability may vary depending on your location. You can pay via:
- Credit Card
- QiWi Wallet
Servers and Locations
The larger a VPN’s server network, the more the options you have to spoof your location. It also increases your odds of finding a less-loaded server or one that is close by.
HideMyAss has the most extensive server coverage you can find. It offers servers in more countries than any other VPN provider. In total, you can access IPs in 190+ countries across Europe, North America, the Middle East, Africa, and the Asia Pacific. HMA also does well in regards to the number of servers, with over 1000.
- Originating IP address
- DNS queries
- Browsing history.
- Transferred data
HideMyAss is located in the UK, which is not the best jurisdiction for privacy. The country is a member of the Five Eyes, 9 Eyes, and 14 Eyes surveillance alliances. However, this isn’t a dealbreaker with HMA. The provider’s strict no-logging practices ensure that there is no way of tracing your online activities back to you.
Encryption and Protocols
When it comes to VPN security, there are two key factors to consider – protocol and encryption. HideMyAss offers industrial-strength security provided via AES-256-GCM encryption, RSA-4096 handshaking, and SHA-256 data authentication.
As for the protocols, the VPN uses OpenVPN on Windows and Android, and IKEv2/IPsec on Mac and iOS. Both combinations are robust and should keep you safe online.
HideMyAss VPN Features
As you would expect from a VPN of its size, HMA offers all the basic features, and then some. It supports unlimited bandwidth, unlimited server switches, and does not restrict any type of traffic.
The VPN also comes with the popular split-tunneling feature, which allows you to choose which applications go through the VPN, while everything else connects to the internet directly.
Other great HideMyAss features include:
- Smart kill switch: Automatically stops your internet connection making sure no data leaks when your connection to a VPN server drops. HMA’s kill switch can be customized to activate for your whole system or on an app-by-app basis.
- Leak shield: HMA uses its own private DNS service, which offers protection against IPv4/IPv6 and DNS leaks. As a bonus, it blocks ads and phishing domains.
- IP shuffle: Improves your anonymity by randomizing your IP addresses anywhere from every 10 minutes to once a day depending on your choice.
- Automatic connection rules: Allows you to choose and set certain networks to trigger the VPN to start automatically once your device is connected.
- DDoS protection: Blocks DDoS – Denial of Distributed Service – attacks, which can be used to slow your internet connection or take you off a game server or the web.
HMA provides tools for checking IP, DNS, and WebRTC leaks. We ran a series of tests and we did not find any leaks. Everything considered, HMA is a pretty secure VPN.
Speed and Performance
When it comes to VPNs, what you gain in privacy and security, you lose in speed. However, that does not mean you have to settle for a slow VPN service. HMA is one of the few providers that deliver fast and secure connections.
We ran multiple speed tests and we were pleasantly surprised by the results. When connected to nearby servers, the VPN averaged around 44 Mbps on our baseline 50 Mbps connection. That’s a speed reduction of just 12%. We experienced sharper drops with distant servers, but, overall, the performance was impressive.
Streaming services and VPN providers are locked in a cat-and-mouse game. Netflix, iPlayer, Hulu, Disney Plus, and Amazon Prime Video all actively detect and block VPN IPs. Netflix is the most aggressive and only a few VPNs work with the streaming service,
Still, a few providers have found workarounds. HideMyAss is one of the few. The VPN offers streaming optimized servers that reliably unblock Netflix and other popular streaming services. It also delivers consistently fast speeds allowing you to enjoy a smooth streaming experience.
P2P & Torrenting
HMA solid encryption and strict logging practices make it a good option for torrenting. The VPN is also fast and does not impose data caps. HMA does not restrict torrent traffic and has multiple P2P dedicated servers located in the US, UK, Czech, France, Germany, and Netherlands.
HideMyAss can be used across desktop computers, mobile devices, and web browsers. The VPN is easy to set up and use and comes with native apps for the primary devices, including:
- Android TV
HMA also offers extensions for Chrome and Firefox, as well as VPN configurations for Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, CentOS, and other Linux distros. Additionally, you can set up the VPN on your router allowing you to secure all the devices in your home.
It’s not often that you find a VPN provider that has excellent service. So, we were happy to see that HMA does exceptionally well in this category. The support team is friendly and offers quick responses.
Available direct customer service options include:
- Live chat
- Support tickets
HMA has an extensive support center on its website that contains a knowledge base, community forum, and information on how to get started. The knowledge base section is particularly well equipped and features setup guides for all supported devices, along with FAQs and troubleshooting articles.
There’s a lot to like in HideMyAss. Protocols and encryption are top of the line and the VPN effortlessly unblocks Netflix, which is no small feat these days. HMA is also compatible with all key platforms and its customer support is commendable. If you are looking for a privacy-focused VPN that’s quick and reliable, HideMyAss is worth a try.